He gambled and drank and cursed away
His days that seemed to him so vile.
He wished for a day
In Prague and Bombay,
And soon, he said, in just a while.
His voice grew hoarse from all of his liquor
And his squalor and pinkish riddles.
The church bells flicker,
And he grows sicker
As he slept to the sound of fiddles.
Vibrant, he wakes to the chiding
Of his woman, his lover-girl.
His children are hiding
And she is abiding,
Awaiting her piece of the world.
The world, all—he promised her all:
The moonbeams straight down from the sky,
The cherries in fall
The whippoorwill’s call,
And he promised her never to lie.
He scorned all his bad luck, and grace,
And God, and the whole world, and booze.
He hated her lace
As she hated his face,
Because, God, how he hated to lose.